ZIMBABWE – The state owned but Zanu PF controlled Sunday Mail newspaper has been forced into issuing an embarrassing apology to MDC-T Treasurer General Roy Bennett after publishing an ‘exclusive’ interview purportedly with the exiled politician attacking his party leader Morgan Tsvangirai.
The Sunday Mail now claims the article headlined “Bennett slams Tsvangirai”, which was carried in the March 23 issue “was written by a Bulawayo-based freelance reporter, Simba Jemwa, who has been unreachable on his mobile phone after claiming that he has a voice recording of the purported interview.”
The article claimed Bennett said Tsvangirai is “power-hungry” and “strong-handed” in resisting calls for leadership renewal. The article also claimed that Bennett ‘spoke-out’ against the recent suspension of MDC-T official Elton Mangoma, allegedly calling it “unprocedural.”
Through his lawyer Mr. Tafadzwa Mugabe of Nyakutombwa Mugabe legal counsel, Bennett described the so-called interview as a complete falsehood. He said no such interview ever took place and he wanted to disassociate himself from the title, content and implications of Jemwa’s story.
“In the circumstances, The Sunday Mail is retracting the story and apologizing to Mr Bennett for any inconveniences caused by the publication of the story,” read the apology published in the hard copy of the paper. Although the Sunday Mail story also appeared on its website, no apology was put online.
Last week Bennett told London based SW Radio Africa “I never made any comments nor have I done any interviews with anyone, I never have and never will talk to the ZANUPF propaganda machine. I am not doing any interviews on internal party issues.”
Copy of Sunday Mail apology